To mark the 2021 international day for Older Persons, the Director General, National Senior Citizens Center, Dr. Emem Omokaro led a team on a medical outreach to older persons at the Chief’s palace in Karu.
Speaking to the senior citizens before the commencement of the medical exercise, Dr. Omokaro said the aim of the outreach is to take the cost of medical bills off Older Persons. She also disclosed plans by the center to organize trainings to build skills and capacity in various areas for Older Persons.
The DG noted that ” one of the critical areas that the NSCC is concerned about is how inclusive Primary Healthcare is and how functional the Primary Healthcare can be”.
According to her, inclusion includes “mainstreaming geriatric assessment into primary health care”
” We are also talking about health insurance, Coverage, health promotion, health literacy so that they know what to do”.
She said the scope of the outreach is general basic checks on the eye, diabetes and blood pressure, adding that medication would be given to them.
The Older Persons who spoke to journalists expressed joy at the opportunity to get free healthcare, which many of them said they could not afford without external assistance since they have no source of livelihood.
Dr. Felix Oyare a community health consultant who shed more light on the outreach said health is being targeted because the aim is to help them age gracefully.
According to him,” health is significant because if you are not healthy, money cannot help you”.
He said Karu was chosen because it has a thickly rural population, where they can get the number of senior citizens that they can make maximum impact.
Dr. Oyare also cautioned that people from 45 years should be cautious of what they do, how they do it and what they eat.
Hanatu Ali, one of the older persons who received medication for pain in her leg thanked the NSCC and expressed hope that such outreaches be regular.